Last weekend I finally got around to watching The True Cost documentary on Netflix. It is about the fashion industry, it’s use of cheap labor and general disregard for anything besides profit. I seriously recommend this documentary, not so you feel bad about yourself, but so you are educated on what it really costs to make the items you wear.
Since I have decided to simplify my life I am commited to only purchasing clothing items I need and that add value to my life. I have always loved fashion and wearing stylish things, but I have never really enjoyed spending a lot of money. Thus, I spent a lot of time shopping at fast fashion retailers when I was younger, aka last summer. The need for more clothes really began when I actually grew into the adult sizing, versus childrens. I had finally reached my adult body, and could now engage in a culture of fashion that I had been left out of until about freshman year of highschool. A culture of womanhood which I was desparate to fit into, in order to relate with the other girls and hopefully attract attention from the boys.
In college this continued more, especially with the increase popularity of social media outlets. And while it is not my intention to critique other women who engage in fashion, I now acklowedge that I do not desire the same attention or image that I once did. In the least, I am working daily to eliminate my desire to maintain the image society tells me I should. Does this mean I don’t like clothing? Absolutely not. I still love fashion, but I am actively trying to look at my clothes as more of a long term investment versus a short term consumable.
I do not want my desire for my image to come at the expense of the environment or women, children or men who are essentially slaves to the system. Truthfully, the humanitarian reason had more of an emotional impact on me than the environmental reason did, although I do consider that to be important as well. Seeing what my consumption does to the lives of others repulsed me, I do not want to use my money to support greedy corporations while simultaneously hurting the lives of others. You may say, “Nothing I do matters?”, but if you live with that impression I truly believe you will have a hard time finding value in anything you do.
So what am I going to do now that I’m not shopping fast fashion? Well the most likely thing that I will do is slip up, I will probably fail, or be given something that is a fast fashion item. Breaking old habits is a process in which you are bound to fall into again. Other than that, I plan on reducing my consumption significantly, which means no shopping; however I know that there will be a time in which I want to purchase a clothing item. When that happens I will most likely go to the thrift store first, and a sustainable, fair-trade, manufacturer second. I love thrift shopping, the hunt for treasures, the cheap prices, everything about it attracts me. I am hoping to write some posts about my thrifting tactics in the near future. While this post just talks about sustainable fashion, I hope to slowly integrate sustainable and fairly made practices into all the items I purchase.
To sum it all up, The True Cost is an eye-opening documentary which only further proliferates my interest in minimalism and simple living. I would highly recommend it, and hope you all get the chance to watch it in the near future. One side note before we go, I am really concerned about being able to find footwear, specifically athletic shoes, that are sustainably made, if anyone has any suggestions please drop a link or comment below!
Once again thanks for reading, if this article interests you and you want to see more from me, don’t be afraid to give me a follow. I look forward to chatting with you again!
Follow this link to learn more about buying better from truecostmovie.com (Fair warning, these brands are more expensive which is why I prefer to shop second hand)